Monday, July 16, 2012

The Old Brewery - Gambling Den

The Old Brewery - Area  13 and 14 - The Gambling Area.

Sporting Types all seem to know about the Grunkie Pit.
13. Gambling Den – Unless a fight is being promoted in area 14 or happening in area 24 this room will be empty and reek of stale beer, sweat, blood, mildew and cinnamon scented candles. There a several scuffed tables of varying quality and numerous chairs scattered about. A huge chalkboard dominates the wall closest to the door to area 14 and rickety bar with several kegs of mushroom beer stands in the center of the room. This room is used to rally the gamblers for fights in area 24, set odds and take bets. If the PC's somehow managed to arrive during a scheduled fight (Every 3rd Saturday) or on other rare occasions, the room will be teeming with assorted toughs, jaded aristocrats and other aficionados of bloodsport. Most of the entertainment staff from upstairs is also likely to be present. 

14. Arena Stands and Pitmaster's Nest – A metal walkway, with strong iron railings runs almost the entire circuit of this room. Originally this area, and area 24 beneath it, were used to brew mushroom beer in massive stone squares. The walkway and production office are now used as a viewing area and betting booth for the Peacock Syndicate's blood sport arena. The syndicate specializes in man-baiting - specifically man vs. grunkie fights. The pit also doubles for grunkie vs. monster battles, torture, gangland execution and corpse disposal, but gamblers in the know claim that the monthly man vs. grunkie matches are not to be missed.

The walled area to the East of the entrance houses the pit master, an affable pallid brute, whose hunched posture and idiot grin do nothing to conceal his corded musculature. The Pitmaster is congenial to all and goes by the name “Unlucky”. He will greet any new visitors with the question “Can't stay away from the game huh? What you got to wager?” If the PCs aren't aggressive, Unlucky will ring the bell in his office/nest and winch up the grate connecting areas 24 and 25. A gaggle of albino grunkies (3D20 grunkies and 1D3 grunkie overlords) will stream into the pit, at which point Unlucky will propose the following games. Additional grunkies will enter the pit at the rate of 1D6 per round of combat or 1D8 per turn after the initial influx.

A. 'Grunkie fight' If the PCs have a grunkie he will bet 1-10GP on the grunkie's chances if thrown into the pit. Any unharmed (i.e. tossed into the water) grunkie or baby grunkie has a 30% chance of surviving as it is attacked as a stranger to the pit's grunkie pack. If the new grunkie lives he will pay out double the bet. If the DM wishes a grunkie vs. grunkie battle (The PC's grunkie vs. 1D3 attacking grunkies) might be more exciting than rolling percentage dice.

B. 'Grunkie baiting' The PC's may select a champion who will be lowered into the pit via a rope harness after paying a stake of 50 GP. Unlucky will winch the champion up at the champion's request, but for every round the champion stays in the pit fighting the attacking grunkies the champion earns back 10GP, up to a maximum of 25 rounds. After 25 rounds Unlucky will declare the party member “the champ”, gleefully pay up the 250GP owed and offer the champion a chance to appear on every third Saturday in an identical combat for a stipend of 500GP an appearance. If anyone dies in the pit Unlucky will be sympathetic, but declare “That's the breaks, grunkies gotta get their own.” Attempts to assist the champion while fighting will be met less charitably, Unlucky will yank the champion up and declare that the PC's have broken the rules. He will keep their money as “grunkie replacement funds” and refuse to let them fight again.

Unlucky lives for the game, and has no interest in struggles between the Syndicate and anyone else, he's protective of his grunkies though, and while he'll let the PC's into the pit as a group he'll ask them to be gentle on his pets and if the PCs have been nice to him give then a warbling whistle that will provide a -1 to any roll on the grunkie encounter table when blown.

If attacked Unlucky will fight back defensively, retreating along the narrow ledge towards his nest.  If he is seriously injured (1/2 HP) he'll offer to surrender if he's unharmed. Once surrendered he'll try to convince the party that he's neutral towards everyone, explain the grunkie fights and offer up 100 GP if the party will leave him alone. His nest is a dark filthy chamber that smells of body odor and contains a cot, several taidermied grunkies an extra scimitar and a book of clippings from advertisements for pit fights and other blood sports.  A careful reader will notice that many of the older clippings show drawings of a pit fighter named "Slavering Mo" who resembles a younger Unlucky.

Unlucky” Grunkie Master (F4) AC 6, HD 4 (25 HP), #AT 2, D 1D4/1D8 +1, MV ('40) Save F4, ML 6 (He won't fight to the death). Albino grunkie skin kilt, giant lizard scale mail armor/vest, barbed whip and scimitar, pouch with 100GP and 100 PP in it. Fights with both weapons and a hit with his whip will give him the target a -2 to all rolls that round from pain and entanglement.

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